The new funding over two years will include $450,000 towards a grants program to encourage value-adding projects in the commercial sector, $300,000 to help set up a peak South Australian commercial seafood body, $100,000 grants for regional recreational fishing events, $100,000 towards an innovative industry-led seafood marketing pilot program, $30,000 to promote recreational citizen science initiatives and $20,000 towards a golden fish tag competition.
The 10-year Seafood Growth Strategy also released today looks to drive economic growth and opportunities for a sustainable and prosperous South Australian seafood sector and build on the nearly 7,000 jobs supported by the sector across the state.
Minister for Primary Industries and Regional Development David Basham said the funding and growth strategy are a result of the collaboration between all seafood sectors through the Marshall Liberal Government’s Seafood Advisory Forum.
“South Australia is, without doubt, the Seafood State of the Southern Hemisphere and this new funding as well as our Growth Strategy will ensure we keep this title well into the future,” Minister Basham said.
“Our seafood sector contributes more than $800 million to the gross state product and supports thousands of jobs across the state in addition to providing important social, cultural and economic benefits to all South Australians.
“The $1 million funding shows the Marshall Liberal Government is committed to growing and improving our entire seafood industry and we have brought all sectors around the table to work together on their mutual interests.
This 10-year strategy was written by commercial fishers, indigenous fishers, aquaculture operators, seafood processors, recreational fishers, charter fishing operators, tourism experts, scientists, communications professionals, skills and training experts and marketing and sales professionals.
“The former Labor Government took our seafood sector for granted and failed to manage our fisheries properly highlighted by the collapse of South Australian snapper stocks.
“Labor also often pitted sectors against one another, the commercial fishers versus recreational fishers, or commercial fishers versus aquaculture operators. The result of this over-politicisation of fisheries was the diminishment of the seafood sector as a whole.
“The Marshall Liberal Government took serious action to fix these legacy issues by listening to all the sectors and delivering key reforms to reduce red tape, lower costs and improve the sustainability of our fisheries.
“The strategy is expansive and thorough, covering a range of issues including advocacy, sustainable management, marketing, logistics, climate mitigation and the creation of unique seafood experiences in our regions.
“The 39 goals and 113 initiatives in the strategy are all geared towards working together to make the most of the opportunities we have here in South Australia.”
Independent Chair of the Seafood Advisory Forum Catherine Cooper said in developing the strategy the Forum identified ways the sector can jointly prepare and meet the challenges, take advantage of opportunities that arise and explore new markets, seafood products and experiences.
“Ultimately through developing the plan we are excited by the products and services the industry offers and are driven to achieve a secure, sustainable resource that is
underpinned by innovation, research and a skilled workforce,” Ms Cooper said.
“This strategy provides us with the path to develop certainty for all stakeholders and create a vibrant, productive, diverse and sustainable seafood sector, providing high-quality seafood and seafood experiences.”
For more information on the Seafood Growth Strategy visit www.pir.sa.gov.au